ASCC Spring 2013 Semester highlights Enhanced Registration system
With the spring 2013 semester at the American Samoa Community College (ASCC) now in its third week, the College’s students, faculty and staff have remarked on the contrast between this semester’s registration and the difficulties they experienced at the beginning of the fall 2012 semester, when a combination of factors led to long lines and a confusion over correct procedure. The relative ease with which this semester has gotten underway underscores how the challenges faced the previous semester represented an anomaly in the College’s registration process rather than an indication of long-term difficulties. Ms. Grace Tualafono, head of the ASCC Management Information Services (MIS) division, explained that most students adapted easily to the updated pre-registration process, which allowed them to set their spring 2013 class schedules online well before the end of the fall 2012 semester. “Our new system eliminates a few steps from the previous pre-registration process,” she said, “and this allowed the lines to move much faster. This time around, by noon each day the lines were short, whereas in the past they often remained long right until the end of the working day.”Mrs. Sifagatogo Tuitasi, head of the Admissions, Records and Financial Aid Office (ARFAO), also remarked on the efficiency of the new system. “The hands-on functions of our staff haven’t changed,” she explained, “but online registration works so well that for the most part manual registration was only necessary for students with issues they needed to resolve with us in person.”The College’s computerized registration system now successfully integrates data from the individual departments involved in the process, including not only the ARFAO, but also the Business Office and Academic Affairs. “Before, each department collected and managed its own data,” recalled Tulafono. “Now, through sharing the responsibilities of a common database, they’ve become accustomed to collaborating on online registration as well as other functions of ASCC. I personally feel that the biggest contribution to the successes seen thus far is their willingness to work together.” Tulafono predicts that the system will become even more efficient and user-friendly as MIS is given time to refine it. “Registration will continue to improve as we integrate more of the student and advisor features of our software system,” she said. “For now, our next goal is to enable students to register from anywhere on or off campus where there’s an Internet connection.”Tulafono emphasized that along with the enhanced computerized system, a major factor in efficient registration is students becoming familiar with using the system. “The more prepared a student is, whether it be completing document submissions, or making sure their balances are cleared, or being informed about ASCC processes and deadlines prior to registration, the smoother the registration process will go for them,” she said. “I would recommend that any student call or visit the campus prior to registration to ask questions about our processes and check whether they have any holds, need to see a Financial Aid counselor, or need to take care of any other issues that might slow them down during registration.” For more information on the American Samoa Community College, visit its web site at: www.amsamoa.edu.